Raiders of the lost parks
AMAN who sowed seeds by firing them from a shotgun (recently re-created, right) will be celebrated at the Harrogate Autumn Flower Show (September 15 to 17).
Reginald Farrer, the father of the British rock garden, who travelled from his home in Clapham, North Yorkshire, to gather plants in Asia, is not the only Indiana Jones-style planthunter featured at the Great Yorkshire Showground this year. Under the theme ‘Postcards from the Hedge’, the exhibition also includes Scot David Douglas, who died in Hawaii aged 35, leaving the Douglas fir as a legacy, and Ernest ‘Chinese’ Wilson, who travelled back from China with more than 300 different species, such as the regal lily.
‘With the vast array of plant varieties now available to us, it’s easy to forget that most of them have roots that reach the four corners of the globe and that a small band of dedicated people risked and, in some cases lost, their lives to bring us the exotic species to brighten our flower borders,’ explains director Nick Smith.
There will also be talks on the planthunters, as well as a giant-vegetable competition, nursery displays and more than 5,000 autumn blooms. Advance day tickets start at £14 (www.flowershow. org.uk/autumn-flower-show-2017)